I think I am fairly prolific. I mean, God knows I tirelessly promote myself and I have no restraint when it comes to posting on social media. But aside from that, I have been running a website for almost ten years and the MN T-Girls is coming up on seven years. I’ve written for En Femme, Frock, and Xdress, modeled for Glamour Boutique, and have done reviews for The Breast Form Store. This girl works.
I know, I get a little tired of myself as well. 🙂
Over the years I have received a lot of nice emails and messages. I have had my fair share of creepy and gross ones, too. I get asked questions and I do my best to answer them based on my experiences and thoughts. I don’t pretend I know everything. Some days I don’t feel I know anything at all.
The most terrifying thing someone can say to me is “I took your advice and I…”. This scares me like nothing else. If the advice is simply a recommendation on where to get a cute pair of heels that’s one thing, but almost anything else puts me on edge.
I get many emails about going out en femme and about relationships. Like I said, I do my best to chat about these things based on my experiences and I have rarely had a negative experience when going out. Based on my adventures and my observations, no one really cares. Yes, I’ve had stares and rude comments but these are rare and few and far between compared to the wonderful and mundane interactions I’ve had.
When I am asked about going out, for the most part I recommend it. Again, this is based on my experiences of no one seemingly caring and my ability to ignore everyone around me. Of course, it’s not as simple as getting dolled out and strutting to the mall. I know there are risks. I know we must be cautious for a number of reasons. Going out the first time or the fiftieth time takes planning and preparation.
That being said, it would crush me if anyone ever stepped out of the house based on my encouragement and had a really really bad and frightening experience. I don’t think I could ever get past that guilt.
This same fear comes along with relationship. In my heart of hearts, I believe we need to be honest with ourselves and with our significant others. I fully believe that coming out is the fair and moral decision.
I know that every relationship is different and unique. I know that this revelation could, and has, ended relationships. Whether it is the crossdressing itself, or a partner feeling they were lied to or deceived, being honest about one’s gender identity will significantly impact things.
I know many of us are on a (ugh) journey. We are all in different places with this compared to where we were three years ago. Even if our wardrobe hasn’t changed, our feelings and perspectives have. At the same time, our journey will lead us to new places in the future. For some of us, it is simply a new and enormous wardrobe. For some, it is stepping out for the first time. For others, it is hormones and living full time.
I have received emails from other girls thanking me or inspiring them to be honest with themselves and/or their partners. Although I am happy that more of us are living life how we wish (or getting closer), I can’t help but feel responsible for any sort of distress, anxiety, or worse when it comes to this revelation on the partners and families of girls like us. I know it is not easy to be in a relationship with someone who is not 100% cis-gender. As confusing as this side of us is for us, it’s even more so for the people in our lives.
I am always happy to listen and to share my perspective, opinion, and experiences with anyone who asks for it, but I am always terrified to do so. Being who we are is a reason to celebrate. I love love love love being bi-gender. I love being a t-girl. I am proud to be trans. But part of my experiences include difficult conversations with my wife and stress and confusion that came with who I am.
We all share victories. No one is more excited when a t-girl buys a new dress or leaves the house for the first time than another girl like us. We also all share your stress, frustrations, heartache, and sadness when it comes to this side of us.
Living our truths and being honest with ourselves and others is not always easy. This revelation will always come with a price. Of course, if you want your life to change you have to accept that the rest of your world will be impacted by the change. Sometimes this change can lead to a fabulous stiletto collection, sometimes it can lead to a significant change in your relationships.
I think what I am trying to say is that if your life or relationships have been made worse because of any advice or inspiration you have taken from me then I am truly sorry. I know what who we are is not easy. I honestly agonize for days when it comes to answering an Ask Hannah question or responding to an email. I try not to give completely direct advice, but instead offer some things to consider or be mindful of when it comes to this side of us.
I do think I am prolific, and I am honored and blessed to be a voice in our community. I take my role seriously and I do not take your trust lightly.
9 thoughts on “Mixed Feelings”
You know people like you are why I built the courage to finally go out… and OMG I WISH I HAD DONE IT SOONER!!! Bad experiences are inevitable, but that’s just part of being trans… there is a ton of hate out there… but even more love!
May I say, go easy on yourself? ♥️ I think sharing experiences and to an extent, opinions, have value. They are stories around what you’ve seen or how you feel. They are not rules or musts, IMHO. I’m struggling to remember a post where you’ve said ‘you should do X’.
Plus, isn’t there an element of Buyer Beware and Your Mileage May Vary? We’re not all the same and as such, any experiences you have will be through the situation, culture, environment, mindset, age, etc that you’re in.
Hannah, I think you are being way too hard on yourself here. You always give thoughtful and considered advice, but in the end we all have to make our own decisions, based on our own life experiences, and what we know about ourselves and those around us. Those decisions are our own responsibilities and we have to own them for ourselves. But I really think you encourage all us t-girls to live the best lives we can, however they manifest themselves.
Nothing but love for you Hannah.
I would hit the like button if I could find it. Oh, there it is 🙂
Keeping busy is definitely a way to a happy life.
I understand how you feel. When you are publicly visible via blogging and work with well known companies and organizations, people see you as a leader. And people always expect that leaders know everything and are super confident about everything. You are just one girl doing her best to navigate this world and help people as she goes. Dealing with our own lives is demanding enough, and having people put us on a pedestal or hold us up as some kind of shining example can be daunting. Keep doing what Hannah does best and try not to worry about what others decide to do.
I cannot imagine refusing to give it my best shot to help a friend who asks for advice. I have also been known to offer help to perfect strangers who looked like they might need it. I believe part of being an adult is recognizing that nobody is perfect, and therefore nobody’s advice will always be 100% perfect in all situations. Even Ann Landers and Dear Abby (am I dating myself here?) occasionally printed letters telling them their advice was way off the mark. Keep doing what you do, Hannah – you provide a valuable service!
Reading your posts, feeling the emotion you put into your presence, and knowing your heart is always in the right place is really incredible. As with others you have helped me so much in my…Adventure….of revealing my true self. Honesty above all, understanding the ups and downs and having the ability to see where others confusion & questions may come from is powerful. It is never your fault if any unfortunate outcomes occur. I’m blessed beyond belief to have a supportive wife; many others do not. But our community has you, your work, words and efforts. One day at a time, one experience at a time. Our world needs much more you!
Your advice always seems uniquely well-considered, careful and caring and I’ve never seen you say “you must do this” or “you really ought to try that”. So if someone considers any advice but their situation gets worse, it’s not your fault as your thoughtful suggestions are always given honestly. Your online output is some of the best trans writing, imagery and encouragement and the trans community is hugely enriched by it. I love your blog so much. Sue x